Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna walks down the tunnel at the franchise's former spring training home past an image of Hall of Famer Hank Aaron among others. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com).

Leadoff: What Hank Aaron sees in Ronald Acuna

So what does the greatest player in Braves history think of rising star Ronald Acuna? 

We got a chance to ask Hank Aaron when he attended the grand opening of the Braves’ new spring training stadium in North Port, Fla., on Sunday.  

Aaron relished the topic. 

“Oh, I think he’s a tremendous ballplayer,” the 85-year-old Aaron said of the 21-year-old Acuna. “If nothing happens to him, I think he’s going to set the world on fire. I think he can do a lot of great things. 

“I like to see him play, and it seems like he understands what playing major league baseball is all about. He doesn’t think simply because he goes out there and goes 4-for-4 that he has everything in the palm of his hands.” 

Aaron said that is a point he has made in conversations with several young Braves players: that the game is extremely hard at the big-league level and that the opposing teams will continually make it so. 

“No matter if you are having a great year, no matter what it may be, you have to remember that the team on the other side has put together the same type ballclub that we’ve put together here with the Braves,” Aaron said. 

But the Braves icon said he has no reservations about any aspect of the Braves phenom’s game.

“I like his attitude. I like him as a ballplayer.  I think the world of him,” Aaron said of Acuna. “What makes it so good is he is so humble; to me, he is. He comes in, he speaks to me: ‘Oh, how are you doing, Mr. Aaron?’ It makes me feel good.”

* * * 

TODAY’S LEADOFF LINKS 

> A series of decisions made by the Braves over the weekend brought the team’s opening day roster into sharper focus. Here’s a look at how it is shaping up.

> Falcons owner Arthur Blank has sold a 10-percent share of the team to two current limited partners and one new limited partner for an estimated $300 million, D. Orlando Ledbetter reports.

> Through tears and smiles, Brandon Adams was remembered at a Georgia Tech memorial service Monday, Ken Sugiura reports.

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